Topper's Blog, A Real Winter, Winter of 1717

10:08 PM, Feb 25, 2013   |    comments
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Now That's a Winter

On this date in 1717 the first of four snow storms in ten days struck Boston and Northeast. By the time the last storm departed there was forty to sixty inches of snow on the ground. Drifts were ten to twenty feet high. Needless to say travel between New York City and Boston was impossible. The snow was two feet deep in Philadelphia. Reports are limited but even in the Metro Area we had up to a foot on the ground. Information gathered from diaries claimed that ninety five percent of the deer population in New England was wiped out.

The winter had already been severe in December and January. Historians claim that by the end of January there was five feet of snow on the ground in New England with drifts to twenty five feet. Can you imagine four more storms in late February and early March ? I can't. After the storm on the twenty seventh there was a storm on March first, March fourth and March seventh. The deep snows damaged the orchards not because it was cold but because the snow cover enveloped some of the branches of the trees. The animals that survived put further hardship on the fruit trees by grazing on limbs and branches that they would not normally be able to reach.

That would be a tough winter to endure in modern times let alone to endure and even survive in the early seventeen hundreds !

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